Date of Award

1984

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

School

School of Education

Program

Counseling Psychology, Ph.D.

First Advisor

Wilfred G. A. Futcher

Second Advisor

Frederick A. Kosinski, Jr.

Third Advisor

Marion J. Merchant

Abstract

Problem. Psychological testing is used in penal institutions at the initial time of incarceration. The purpose of this study was to investigate the possibility of developing distinct psychological profiles for incarcerated females.

Method. The psychological assessment instrument employed to develop these profiles is the Sixteen Factor Personality Questionnaire (16PF). The data which were computed and analyzed to test the eight null hypotheses were provided by a selective sample group of 622 subjects in two penal institutions in Indiana.

Findings. (1) There is no significant difference between personality profiles of incarcerated white females who are property offenders and personality profiles of incarcerated white females who are body offenders. (2) Incarcerated white body offenders and white property offenders differ significantly from the norms for the general population in that they are less tense, emotionally less stable, and more responsive to the outer rather than the inner world. (3) There is no significant difference between personality profiles of incarcerated black females who are property offenders and personality profiles of incarcerated black females who are body offenders. (4) Incarcerated black body offenders and black property offenders differ significantly from the norms for the general population in that they are emotionally less stable, more aggressive, less tense, and more responsive to the outer rather than the inner world. (5) Incarcerated black body offenders differ significantly from the personality profiles of incarcerated white body offenders in that they are more aggressive, outgoing, calculating and shrewd and self-assured. (6) Incarcerated black property offenders differ significantly from the personality profiles of incarcerated white property offenders in that they are more aggressive, outgoing, reticent, self-assured, and emotionally less stable.

Implications. The findings of this study have implications in two major areas: practice and future research. For the practice of psychology, the study is relevant both in the private therapeutic setting and in the penal institutions. Professionals in these two settings need to take note of an individual's 16PF scores and compare them to the norms for the general population and to the profiles of the incarcerated individual. The 16PF appears to be avaluable instrument in differentiating between the personality profiles of incarcerated and non-incarcerated females. Implications of future research were also indicated through the study.

Subject Area

Women prisoners--Psychology, Female offenders--Psychology, Prisoners--Psychology

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